Brighde or Freya: who should a Pagan Scot revere if a Pagan Scot is to revere anyone at all?
Angela Nicolle Sturdevant
(University of Aberdeen)
Paper short abstract:
How does a Modern Pagan Scot identify with their own spirituality in a country that has experienced multi-spiritual personalities, even as modern Christians in Scotland are struggling to self-identify?
Paper long abstract:
The modern neo-pagan movement, as a general rule, may focus on the Goddess or a Great Creator without aligning to a particular spirituality but during the mid-to-late 20th century and onwards, there has been considerable focus on Celtic and Norse Spirituality. Yet for those who live in Scotland, this creates a predicament. The Celts may have lived in Scotland but the Picts were believed to be here first. And the Norse were notorious for raiding the Scottish lands, stealing from the peoples and destroying their environment. So why would a Scot choose to align with either instead of looking to the Picts? And how do they incorporate this spirituality within their own daily mores when there are Christian Churches dedicated to helping do the same and focus on saints who were from Scotland? I will be studying a local neo-pagan group in Aberdeen, Scotland whose members include those that follow both Celtic and Norse spirituality and how they are able to merge their faith into their identity of being a Scot.
Making a better future with ancient pasts: heritage and utopia in neo-paganism and neo-shamanism